It’s been an interesting adventure! I was born on the island of Jersey in the Channel Islands and it was pretty clear early on that my family had spawned a child who quite simply wouldn’t be quiet. By the time I was 5, my Mum took me along to Speech and Drama lessons, probably so that she could get some peace and quiet! I loved performing and it wasn’t long until I was taking part in poetry competitions, drama performances and any other stage type shenanigans I could get involved with.
After one such poetry competition when I was 12, the head of the schools English department called me to his office and gave me a cut out from the Stage newspaper for the Sylvia Young Theatre School in London. They were holding auditions and he thought I might be interested. I don’t remember much about that particular conversation with my Mum but she tells me it went a bit like…
FVO1 – Mum, 40’s. Kind. Encouraging. Aghast.
CVO1 – Daughter. 13. Nuts.
FVO1: You do realise that if you were accepted you’d need to move to London on your own?
CVO1: Oh. No. I don’t fancy that.
SFX – Tumbleweed
CVO1: I do. I do fancy that. Please can I go?! Pllleeaaaaaasssseeee?!!!
So, I auditioned. I got in! I received a part scholarship and mission ‘Get Elisa To London’ was on.
Fortunately for me, I’m from an island that was very supportive of one of it’s yoof following an untrodden vocational path so things snowballed, people rallied, I received funding to help with accommodation and all the rest of it and before I knew what was happening I was saying bye to my incredibly supportive family and friends and found myself standing at the top of an escalator at Tottenham Court Road station, next to a family of strangers that were going to host me, watching my Mums perm disappear underground. (She was getting on the tube, just to clarify. She didn’t have a run in with Sweeney Todd.)
I had 3 amazing years training in acting, singing and dancing at the Sylvia Young Theatre School. (Imagine Fame. It was basically Fame) and did my first voiceovers during that time. After graduating, I moved on to Laine Theatre Arts in Surrey and soon started voicing under the watchful eye of Jacky Davis at Kidztalk.
I left Laine in 2004 with a Level 6 Diploma in Professional Musical Theatre and a Licentiate Acting Diploma (LALAM), 3 years of pretty extensive Voiceover experience under my belt and moved to Glasgow, Scotland to take on the role of Production Co-ordinator for Waterfront Studios whilst continuing to build up my Voiceover career. Graeme and Dave, the producers at Waterfront went on to set up their own company, Pacific Audio, one of the leading Audio Production facilities in the country. I was very fortunate to spend the first part of my voiceover career around them. Graeme produced my first ever voiceover reel and Dave produced my most recent. Great producers and great buddies of mine.
Around the time that they set up Pacific Audio, I installed a recording studio into my home and began voicing full time. I was then approached by Excellent Talent who asked if I would be interested in joining their agency. I was, so I packed up said studio and moved to West London.
After a couple of years in the city, I moved back to Jersey to be near my family again working from my studio in a beautiful part of the island. I also ventured out of the booth occasionally helping co-present and produce for BBC Radio Jersey. I acquired a gorgeous labrador called Tio, had lots of fun living by the sea and spending time with my nearest and dearest but alas, the city called again so back I came, via a brilliantly-named village called Upper Dicker.
Now, Tio and I reside near Greenwich Park in London. The roaming studio is still going strong, with a few upgrades along the way (which just reminded me of this sketch from Only Fools and Horses which I now have to link, coz apparently that’s what you do in blogs…I’m learning) and Tio spends his days galavanting around parks, when I need a break from the booth and occasionally can be found swimming in the Thames.
Background…done! Maybe a bit too in depth but once you start with these things, it’s hard to cut it back. Next time, I think I’ll write about, oh I dunno, voiceovers? That seems like a fairly good shout. Oh, God! I’m still typing. STOP! (Bye x)